Founded by Alisa Saunders and her husband ten years ago, Witham Hill Gymnastics Club in Lincoln has more than 800 members and some 600 on its waiting list.
Gymnastics is already a popular sport, but Alisa attributes its increased attraction to the Olympic and Commonwealth Games of recent years. What the games (and specifically artistic gymnast and silver medallist Louis Smith and triple world champion Beth Tweddle) did was provide a greater awareness and appreciation of the sport, especially for those outside the gymnastic sphere.
Alisa’s club has gone from strength to strength since its humble beginnings in 2007. At first, Witham Hill Gymnastics Club was involved with other clubs and started with only 70 children. It then moved to a leisure centre, needing to move yet again to its present venue some years later due to increased membership – the club now employs 20 paid coaches and 15 volunteers.
Gymnast on Elite Pathway
The club works with children of all ages – from pre-school to adult, although there is only one adult class. The bulk of the membership are school age children, and the club’s biggest success story is Katie Wood. The eleven-year-old is now on the elite pathway and has taken part in international competitions, placing in the top 20 – the furthest anyone from Alisa’s club has progressed.
Alisa herself has just passed her national judging standards test and is the first female national judge in the county – an impressive feat!
Hearing about our Pay Subs Online membership management software while attending a Nick Ruddock conference [Nick Ruddock is a renowned Team GB gymnastics coach who has taught European, World and Olympic champions and teams], Alisa admits she didn’t take up the online club membership software initially.
Pay Subs Online
“I’d heard about Pay Subs Online through other clubs in our area,” Alisa says, “so I knew what was on offer. Pay Subs Online was at the conference, and I looked at what they did.”
“I then worked out that our existing system took hours away from our members of staff. We only have a small office – myself, my husband, and my daughter, and two clerical people who just work a few hours a week. The system we were using took up a couple of days every month.”
“We also had people paying by standing order, but they would change the day the standing order went out every month. This would mean we didn’t get payments some months and had to chase them up. It took up a huge amount of time and if they left, they just didn’t pay us.”
Online Membership Management Software ‘Transformed’ Club
Alisa eventually decided to take the plunge and said the Pay Subs Online membership management software has transformed the way the club works, making it invaluable to them.
“For a start,” she says, “we were able to use the software to bring our waiting list down by a couple of hundred people, as we knew who had received the emails and who hadn’t. Another bonus for us is that when someone does leave, we can fill the space at once, so the waiting list goes down and there are no gaps in payments which has increased our profits – Pay Subs Online has been well worth it.”
What Alisa also appreciates is the ease with which she can email parents, something she is now able to do extensively.
New System, Much Better
“I’m emailing people left, right and centre! But almost everyone who is involved in the club says how much better our new system works, and I’ve given our members until January to move over to the new system entirely.
“We’ve recently opened a café upstairs, and we’re thinking of linking up the software with the café. What this would do, for example, is allow parents to give their children money to spend in the café when we hold our summer schools. They could get a £5 allowance through the system as an ‘Optional Extra’ and parents wouldn’t need to provide them with cash.”
Thanks to the increased money coming in, and the regularity of payments due to our membership management software, Alisa has set her sights on expanding the club again – she’d also like to improve the waiting areas. All things are possible now for Witham Hill Gymnastics Club, and Pay Subs Online wishes them the very best for the future!
Witham Hill Gymnastics Club can be found at 15b Croftham Road, Allenby Industrial Estate, Lincoln. Telephone: 01522 520 159
If you’d like to try and replicate the success of Witham Hill Gymnastics Club, why not take a tour of our membership management software today and see the benefits first hand – to take the free tour, click here.
Alternatively, why not take a look at our free whitepaper detailing ‘Which Admin Tasks Can Be Done Quicker and Easier Online?’ – to download it for free, click here.